The ambient & nature sounds that starts Bearstorm’s new EP should relax you but instead it leaves you unsettled as if whatever the flies are buzzing around is far more horrible then you can imagine.
It sets the scene well for the doom/blackened metal that follows. Biophobia is a raw sounding record with a sound that leaves your head feeling a bit fuzzy, the kind of fuzziness that puts a silly smile on your face.
The contrast between the doomy riffs & black metal style vocals works wonderfully well in particular on Cravers of a Second Birth. The slow paced start leads into a song that surprises the more you listen too it. The proggy guitars really dominate here but for good reason, there is some really good stuff going on.
It’s hard to get a grip on the EP at first, that comes with multiple listens where time changes, different beats & the under-utilised drumming really begins to stand out. This is a great piece of music pulling together structured songs from what initially sounds a bit messy.
The 3 minute instrumental, Agaric Catechism makes this a worthy listen no matter what. It’s got a sombre feel at first but when the drums come in, it becomes a more uplifting piece of music. It’s such an impressive song that the 8 minute closer, Cryptobiotic Filth Destroyer was always going to struggle to top that. It comes close though with a stunning guitar medley at the start before the vocals make a return.
The near-halfway change in direction doesn’t quite hit the mark being a bit too abrupt & beginning to feel like ‘prog for progs’ sake. While that’s tiresome it does rebuild the goodwill by returning to a heavier vocal led finish.
Bearstorm have created a wonderfully interesting & ear-pleasing EP here. It’s brimming with ideas & for the most part they all work well. The highlight is the the instrumental but there really isn’t a bad song here!
Overall Track List:
1. Dawn Chorus
3. Cravers of a Second Birth
4. Agaric Catechism
5. Cryptobiotic Filth Destroyer
We’d like to thank Bearstorm & FullBlast! PR for providing us with a copy of the EP for this review. You can pick up the album over on Grimoire Records bandcamp page as well as their back-catalogue & merch on their own bandcamp page. You can check out more from Bearstorm over on their Facebook page & check out their music on YouTube, Spotify & Apple Music.
Bearstorm - Biophobia (Grimoire Records)
The Final Score - 7/10
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